Google, God and Techno-Faith

Ned Fielden
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In the past six years, an eon in Web-time, Google has risen to extraordinary heights of popularity for web searching, to the point that many university students, as well as others, use Google as their first tool of research. Despite Google's well-deserved reputation for returning relevant results, what else is going on for users who employ this sort of internet tool? How does their faith in technology shape their use of it? Is this faith misplaced in users and what do they need to keep in mind regarding the nature and makeup of their locating tools while conducting research? We will look at user behavior and assumptions, examine some of the current notions regarding faith and expectations of technology, and try some predictions of what we might expect from users' use of web search tools in the future.

Keywords: Web Search Engines, Faith in Technology, Social Aspects of Technology
Stream: Technology in Education, Knowledge and Technology
Presentation Type: Paper Presentation in English
Paper: Google, God and Techno-Faith

Ned Fielden

Reference/Instruction Librarian, Information, Research and Instructional Services, San Francisco State University

Since 1995 Fielden has been an instructional librarian at San Francisco State University where he coordinates library instructional activities. His books include Internet Research (2001) and Search Engines Handbook (2002), and he has spoken on issues of Information Literacy and the use of Internet search engines. He is currently examining university library history and the development of intellectual curiosity as it relates to relevant information sources and structures. The history of how scholarship developed with the growth of universities over time, and how communication amongst scholars evolved to the present day has potential meaning for understanding current trends in information technology and its use. Fielden has an MLIS from UC Berkeley and a History MA from Sonoma State University, and resides in Berkeley, California.

Ref: T05P0123